Looking for something to put in your mouth this weekend? We've got you covered. Check out what's on our plate.
Forget about boring food duos like peanut butter and jelly, peas and carrots, and bread and butter. Chiles and chocolate are much more flavorful, and this weekend the pairing is getting its very own festival. Today through Monday, the Chile & Chocolate Festival is at the Desert Botanical Garden from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. There will be a wide variety of samples available, from gourmet chocolates and brownies to freshly roasted chiles and chicken mole. Festival entry is included with paid admission to the garden ($8 to $18); members get in for free. In addition to plenty of chile and chocolate foods, there will be a bar featuring chocolate martinis, a Latin DJ spinning beats, and live dance performances.
Feel noble about drinking beer this Saturday at the Beer for Brains RAREaffair, a charity event that uses craft beer to raise awareness about brain cancer. There will be no shortage of incredible beers, provided by Papago Brewing Company, Bell's Brewery, New Belgium, and more. Scottsdale's Sonoran Brewing Company will also be serving a special concoction, the RAREaffair ale. Just in case beer isn't your thing, there will also be wine, whiskey, tequila, vodka, and other spirits. Unlimited food samples will be provided by local restaurants such as Praying Monk, Lon's at the Hermosa Inn, SanTan Brewing Company, and O.H.S.O. Eatery + Nanobrewery. The event, held at the Arizona Science Center, also includes live music, an airbrush artist painting the Beer for Brains logo on event-goers' heads, silent auctions, and prize raffles. General admission ($90) begins at 7:30 that evening; VIPs ($175) get early entry at 6:30 p.m.
Not only does Sweet Republic make luscious, addictive ice cream, but they also serve it in pie form. One-upping our childhood favorite ice cream cake, these pies start with a made-from-scratch crushed waffle cone crust, have a thick layer of ice cream, and are topped with fresh whipped cream. Pumpkin spice is the latest flavor and is finished with a drizzle of salted butter caramel sauce. Slices are available for $4.50 at the Scottsdale ice cream shop, and if it's love at first bite, place a Thanksgiving pre-order by Sunday, November 11 to receive a 20% discount. Sweet Republic ice cream pies are normally $22, and other flavors available to order are apple, huckleberry swirl, maple pecan, and grasshopper.
There's no end in sight to the cupcake craze that's swept the nation. Show your affection for frosting and tiny cakes at the third annual Cupcake Love-In, taking place this Sunday, November 11, at 11 a.m. The line-up of bakers includes Tammie Coe Cakes, Urban Cookies/Ollie Cakes, Whoopie Baking Co., 24 Carrots, and Sweet Jonez Rocking Cupcakes. The Hotel Valley Ho (also partaking in the competition) is hosting the event. In addition to thousands of cupcakes, the Love-In will feature a photo booth, kids' decorating station, demos by ABC Cakes, and a cupcake eating contest (followed by one wicked sugar rush). Tickets are $20 for adults, $5 for kids ages 10 and under, and $50 for VIPs. Proceeds from the event support Project H3: Vets.
Walking around downtown in the afternoon looking for wine (and more wine) is usually frowned upon, but not this Saturday! From 1 to 6 p.m., you are actually encouraged to do just that -- and to take the light rail if you aren't up for all that walking. Sixteen restaurants along the Central Corridor, including Province and Maizie's Café, will be offering wallet-friendly wine samples and snacks. It's free to join in on the fun, and samples are $2 to $4 a glass. The first 300 people to partake in the vino at Blue Hound Kitchen & Cocktails will receive a free Urban Wine Walk souvenir glass. All that's required to participate is a map, an all-day Light Rail pass ($3.50), and your ID showing that you're 21 or over.